Premier Ford unveils $28.5 billion vision to get Ontario transportation system moving

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Ontario PC leader Doug Ford reacts after winning the Ontario Provincial election to become the new premier in Toronto, on Thursday, June 7, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

MISSISSAUGA — Transit users and commuters across Ontario can look forward to transportation improvements as part of the Government of Ontario’s historic new transportation vision, Premier Doug Ford announced today. Joined by Jeff Yurek, Minister of Transportation, and Monte McNaughton, Minister of Infrastructure, Premier Doug Ford announced a $28.5 billion expansion to Ontario’s transit network. This is the most money ever invested to get shovels in the ground and to get new subways built.

“Our government is investing in transportation to bring relief and new opportunities to transit users and commuters,” said Ford.

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Ontario Premier Doug Ford applauds as Lt.-Gov. Elizabeth Dowdeswell delivers the speech from the throne to open the new legislative session at the Ontario Legislature at Queen’s Park in Toronto on Thursday, June 12, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

“In every decision that we make, whether it’s a program, policy or service, we put people first.

We listened to people in Etobicoke and Mississauga about the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension. We heard there is congestion and that a street level LRT would be too slow, and only add to the traffic on an already busy street,” said MPP Deepak Anand. “We are making decisions for the future of this province and making investments to build this line fully grade separated,  above and below the lanes of traffic.

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We are not pitting transit riders against drivers. “The province will invest $11.2 billion to support four rapid transit projects. This funding over delivers on the government’s commitment to put $5 billion into subway extensions. The Eglinton Crosstown West Extension estimated cost is $4.7 billion and will could be delivered before 2031. This funding is in addition to the significant contributions made to transportation in Ontario. In just 9 months, Ontario has delivered the long-asked for expansion of GO Train service to Niagara falls, years ahead of schedule; dramatically enhanced GO Train service to Kitchener Waterloo region; committed billions to new transit projects for Hamilton and Ottawa regions; moved ahead with the long awaited LRTs for Mississauga, and announced $1.3 billion to repair and rebuild highways across the provinces as well as billions in infrastructure to better support our rural communities. As part of the announcement today, Premier Ford reaffirmed the government’s commitment to working with the City of Toronto to upload subway infrastructure.

“The TTC is a vital service that supports not just Torontonians but the people of Ontario,” said Yurek.

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Doug Ford is sworn in as premier of Ontario during a ceremony at Queen’s Park in Toronto on Friday, June 29, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Blinch

“Our government is continuing to work in good faith with the City under the Terms of Reference to make sure that we can build better transit faster.”

“Today we are embarking on the most ambitious provincial transit buildout Ontario has ever seen,” added McNaughton. “This is great for people and good for jobs.”

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– The Ontario Line estimated cost is $10.9 billion and could be delivered by 2027.
– The Yonge North Subway Extension estimated cost is $5.6 billion and should open soon
after the Ontario Line.
– The Scarborough Subway Extension estimated cost is $5.5 billion and could be delivered
before 2030.
– The projects will require a combined $28.5 billion, of which the province has committed
$11.2 billion.
– The Terms of Reference [
agreed between the province and the City of Toronto have guided discussions between
them on uploading subway infrastructure from the city to the province, including the building
and maintenance of new and existing subway lines. These discussions continue regarding
existing subway lines.